sunset from the upper porchImage


The hexagons have taken on a new life.  We built a bunch out of a total of 8 sheets of baltic birch plywood (5’x5′ sheets strangely), then arranged.  Its a sculpture/shelving/guardrail.  Hopefully it will also make the stair to the attic less precarious, as it will be quite steep without any wall along the office, by creating a screen. For now its a bit wobbly, but it will brace to the stair and end up being very strong.  We’ll add drawers, shelves and misc. inserts to the hexes later, after we’ve taken care of some more essential items.

In the meantime, we’ve also had all the shutters installed, and a good start on the fence.  The shutters have operable louvers, and really help on the privacy and security.  The construction was well executed, but the paint job was totally rushed.  Very frsutrating.  It’ll work out, but the painted hinges are pretty messy.  And the hardware was not totally thought out.  Hopefully they can repair some of the damage they did to the window casing while they installed.  The screws that go through the hinges were slightly too long and went all the way through the casing in some instances. Their plan is to grind down the screws, reinstall, bondo the holes, and touch up the paint.  Wouldn’t it have been easier to buy the right length screws?

2013-08-02 13.34.122013-08-01 18.25.21

We also have gotten to about 99% complete on the kitchen.  A few nasty details with the paneling that was added along the underside/sides of the wall cabinets.  Anyone have an opinion on those panels? DO they add anything? They were added to cover up fastener locations on the undersides, but not sure if its an improvement.

The fence is about half way.  Its called a “7 board fence,” and is traditional to this part of town.  1×12 treated pine boards, screwed to 4×6 posts set 3 deep into the ground with concrete.  It will weather to a gray, instead of the current chemical green.  Gates will be added in the openings, a large one for potential driveway if we are ever forced to put in off-street parking.  Hopefully that wont be necessary, and we can stick with the plan for a garden.

Here’s some progress images.  Once the fence and stair to the attic are completed, its mostly millwork and repairing/touching up things from here on out.

Notice the street-style bball hoop Matt got me for my birthday. Brings me back to childhood and after-school 2 on 2 games in my bedroom – don’t know how my parents could stand the rowdiness!   Also note the pencil cactus  (Euphorbia) on the upper porch from my boss at the semi-official house warming party.  A nice addition and start to the garden!


ImageImage Image


Many boxes moved, many stairs climbed, and then a party.  It was successful, no broken things, no injuries. Uptown apartment goodbye.  Image

We eliminated the middle rail in the shutters which gives them a more vertical proportion.  They are wider than a traditional shutter in lieu of the window sizes.  Different types of mahogany used for the frame and the louvers.  Stainless steel staples connect the louvers to the operating rod.  Almost all assembled.  Should be painted by middle of next week, and installed the following week.  Hardware TBD – ImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

Its just 40 steps right, so easy.?!

The last (official) step: Inspections (are a pain)  

Final Plumbing Lines Inspection

FInal Gas Inspection

Final HVAC Inspection (same inspector as the gas)

Final Building Inspection

Final Bank Inspection

Final Inspection from the HDLC (Historic District)


Shutters are being fabricated as we speak. I believe all the parts and pieces were cut last week, and this week is assembly and finishing.  They will be traditional wood louvered shutters.  You may ask: why traditional with a modern house ?

Answer: no one has improved on the louvered shutter! I tried to consider better options, but couldn’t think of anything – at least not anything close to affordable.

We explored some colors this weekend, and could not solicit your input as we needed an answer this morning.  In the image below there are three colors.  Don’t worry, you don’t have to choose, we went the pluralist route – all three! Cayenne on the main house, electric lime on one of the tall windows, and indulgent (the light purple) on the Studio.


2013-07-14 14.39.30

Amidst the hectic stuff, the hexagon shelves along the staircase edge are being constructed.  These technically don’t meet code, though they “eventually” will by adding drawers and backs.  In the meantime we’ll adhere some plywood to them to prevent small dogs from jumping to their injury. Image